So just as these conservative elites are at least partly responsible for the fact that Trump came to power in the first place, it's also true that his coup failed because enough of them put on the breaks.
I haven't really wanted to weigh into this, but the idea that people commit crimes because they think (or know) they won't be held accountable does not hold up to the research on deterrence and punishment.
An observation about the Trump Org indictment: The criminal scheme was described as ongoing as of June 30, 2021.
Even when they knew they were being investigated, they kept cheating.
The arrogance is stunning. I did a brief stint years ago in a firm that represented white-collar clients, and I did see that attitude. They thought they were "pushing the envelope" and it was no big deal.
A task of the lawyers was to persuade them that they were in big trouble.
I think this is exactly right. It's the only way he has ever earned money. The Trumps don't add value. They take advantage of situations. He floats on debt; he borrows against assets he inflates. His "product" is his "brand."
I've been thinking about this defense of the Trump Org. by the National Review, which dovetails with Trump's monologue about how not paying taxes on tuition for grandchildren is no big deal.
Ignore the lies in this piece for a moment and consider the underlying argument. . . 1/
It's about what kind of laws we should have and the purpose of the criminal justice system.
It's the idea behind MAGA: Take America back to the time when [white] men could cheat (the 1890s).
When Trump breaks the laws they don't think should exist, his supporters cheer.
The criminal justice system as existed before the 1960s really had the purpose of putting Black men in jail. It was a way of getting around the 13th Amendment (which gave an exception to forced labor: conviction for a crime).